Border Force seize 10 million black market cigarettes
Seizure prevented the Treasury losing almost £3 million in unpaid duty.
Around 10 million black market cigarettes worth almost £3 million in unpaid duty have been seized by Border Force at Harwich.
Scanners detected anomalies with a Polish-registered lorry which arrived in the Port of Harwich, Essex, on a ferry from the Hook of Holland on Thursday 8 October. Paperwork for the vehicle showed it should have contained dozens of washing machines but only 4 appliances were onboard. Border Force officers inspected the vehicle’s trailer to discover huge pallets of shrink-wrapped Lambert and Butler silver cigarettes.
It is the second largest seizure of cigarettes by Border Force at Harwich this year.
Home Secretary Priti Patel recently said:
Every day Border Force teams are protecting the UK from violent gangs hell-bent on smuggling in weapons, drugs and illicit cash.
Border Force’s hard work has stopped criminals from making huge profits from black market cigarettes and cheating the taxpayer out of millions of pounds.
The Polish driver was arrested on suspicion of evasion of excise duty but was subsequently released. The cab and trailer he was driving was seized.
Had the smuggling attempt not been detected, it would have cost the Treasury almost £3 million in unpaid duty and VAT.
Border Force had further success in stopping illicit cigarettes entering the UK at the Port of Dover earlier this month. On Saturday 3 October, officers discovered almost 1 million cigarettes on a Slovenian-registered lorry which had arrived at Dover’s Eastern Docks. Four pallets of cigarettes were found worth about £430,000 in unpaid duty and VAT.
Border Force officers use hi-tech search equipment to combat immigration crime and detect banned and restricted goods that smugglers attempt to bring into the UK.
In 2019, Border Force protected the Treasury from losing more than £210 millon in unpaid duty from black market cigarettes.
Latest News from
Points-based immigration system opens01/12/2020 15:20:00
New global system awards points for skills, having a job offer and speaking English.
UK and France sign new agreement to tackle illegal migration30/11/2020 12:15:00
New agreement reached by the Home Secretary and her French counterpart to tackle migrant activity in the Channel.
Government plans to strengthen firearms laws for public safety26/11/2020 09:10:00
Consultation proposes new controls on air weapons, miniature rifle ranges, and high-powered firearms.
Lord Walney announced as independent adviser on political violence and disruption24/11/2020 11:10:00
Lord Walney will take on a new unpaid role as independent adviser on political violence and disruption.
Thousands more health workers to benefit from visa extensions20/11/2020 12:20:00
More than 6,000 frontline health workers will have their visas extended for a year for free, including doctors, nurses and paramedics.
Funding boost for rape and domestic abuse support19/11/2020 10:17:00
Ministers yesterday (18 November 2020) confirmed a major funding boost for victims of rape and domestic abuse as services face dealing with greater demand this winter.
Government leads national drive to protect victims of child abuse18/11/2020 11:10:00
New campaign to protect children launched as tougher restrictions come into effect.
Immigration Act receives Royal Assent: free movement to end on 31 December 202012/11/2020 11:10:00
The Immigration Act yesterday (Wednesday 11 November 2020) received Royal Assent and was signed into law.